Monday, July 02, 2012

Amelia Lost

Amelia Lost: The Life and Disappearance of Amelia Earhart
by Candace Fleming 
Schwartz & Wade, 2011

Last night I finished reading Amelia Lost. This morning I read this on The Writer's Almanac:

It was 75 years ago today, in 1937, that Amelia Earhart was last heard from, somewhere over the Pacific. She and her navigator, Fred Noonan, had set off in May from Miami to fly around the world in a Lockheed Electra. She said, "I have a feeling that there is just about one more good flight left in my system, and I hope this trip is it." 
They had completed all but about 7,000 miles of the trip when they landed in New Guinea. Maps of this part of the Pacific were inaccurate, and U.S. Coast Guard ships were in place to help guide them to their next stop, the tiny Howland Island. The weather was cloudy and rainy when they left New Guinea. At 7:42 a.m., Earhart communicated to the Coast Guard Cutter Itasca: "We must be on you, but we cannot see you. Fuel is running low. Been unable to reach you by radio. We are flying at 1,000 feet." Her last transmission, about an hour later, was "We are running north and south." 
Franklin Roosevelt sent nine ships and 66 aircraft to search for the downed plane, to no avail. 
This month, 75 years after Earhart's disappearance, a new search team will use robotic submarines to comb the area where they think the Electra went down.

Cosmic, eh?

This is the kind of longer nonfiction I can imagine reading aloud to fourth grade and up. Fleming does an excellent job maintaining tension, even though we pretty much know the story. She does this by alternating between chapters about Earhart's disappearance and the search that was conducted for her, and chapters that tell her life story.

My next #bookaday/#paredownthetbrpile book will be The Good, The Bad, and the Barbie. At first glance, it might seem to be a ironic choice. But I'm interested to see what kind of overlap there is between Amelia, the legendary/mythic/iconic role model for women/girls, and the much-maligned toy role model/monster/psychological destroyer know as Barbie.


  1. Love, love this book. A mystery that's always been amazing. Can't wait for more information after the search...

  2. Did think this was a particularly good book on Earhart, and very readable. I actually really enjoyed The Good, The Bad, and the Barbie, having a kind of love/hate relationship with my Sweet 16 Barbie myself. (Yep, just dated myself there! Isn't Barbie over 50 now?)


We welcome your contribution to the conversation!